European Union legislators took the unprecedented step Wednesday to begin process of imposing sanctions on Hungary for presenting a “systematic threat” to the bloc’s Democratic values.
The European Parliament voted 448-197 to launch an Article Seven process, which could result in the suspension of Hungary’s EU voting rights.
The vote dealt a serious blow to Prime Minister Viktor Orban, further isolating him from powerful allies in the midst of his ambitious effort to push Europe toward Hungary’s version of an “illiberal democracy.”
Orban managed during his eight years in office to deflect his critics, who contend Hungary’s electoral system is irregular, media freedom and judicial independence are waning and refugees and asylum-seekers are abused.
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